Chrome Extension High GPU Usage

I’ve noticed that Chrome’s GPU usage can spike to 50-70% (as measured by Task Manager) while performing basic browsing activities (e.g. go back a page then go forward a page). If I disable the Chrome Paperpile Extension, the max GPU usage decreases dramatically to < 15% when performing exactly the same browsing activities.

Is there a means to profile Paperpile Extension’s GPU usage to verify this issue, and—if it is indeed an issue—ensure the extension is a conscientious GPU consumer?

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Not sure if it answers your question but chrome is an all kinds of resources hog in my experience- which is why I switched to edge. You can also try brave or Vivaldi. Paperpile works well with all three chromium based browsers.

@Karl_Hahn, running some tests on our end on different laptops does not seem to bring GPU usage above 20% load. Is there a chance you have some experimental Chrome flag enabled in chrome://flags/ ? That’s our only theory so far to explain the difference in GPU load. Any further details about your browser environment could help us reproduce.

Hi @vicente, thanks for the response. So far this is highly reproducible for me, so please let me know what specifically I can provide to help.

Precision 5520; Windows 10; Chrome 100; no experimental flags; hardware acceleration enabled.

Simple reproduction:

  1. Open Task Manager and locate Chrome process launched with “–gpu-process”
  2. Open Chrome
  3. Enable Paperpile extension
  4. Go to e.g.
  5. Refresh page one or more times (observe high GPU usage of the Chrome process)
  6. Disable Paperpile extension
  7. Refresh page one or more times (observe usual GPU usage)

Use Case:
Usually I have 10-30 Paperpile tabs open (I like my papers).

Could the excessive usage be due to every tab performing some operation? I wonder if there is some O(n) operation that can briefly overwhelm the GPU. The extension already exhibits (very minor) O(n) behavior elsewhere: whenever a tab with an open paper receives the focus, that tab and every other tab with an open paper briefly display the paper title in the PDF viewer menu bar.

Still no luck, @Karl_Hahn. We reproduced the same steps and conditions you describe in this video and the usage did not go above 10%. This is also while the screen recording extension is active; disabling it lowers the percentage further.

This means the explanation might be something on your end – perhaps an outdated graphic driver or the like. Could I trouble you to try the same from another PC (not your Dell Precision) to see if the same behavior occurs? Have you also tried other Chromium browsers like @heumed suggests? Brave, Vivaldi, MS Edge, Opera are some alternatives. Let us know.

This is quite possible. Unfortunately, there are other constraints that prevent me from keeping it up-to-date.

I was unable to reproduce the issue on my personal desktop, but it has a much stronger GPU than the Precision and is completely up-to-date.

For now, it’s sufficient for me to disable the extension when things become problematic. Thanks for taking time to look into this.

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